Layoffs

Gordon Campbell is slashing the civil servant force by one-third. That’s 33%, or roughly 10 000 jobs. He expects 2500 to be cut through terminating short-term contracts, not filling empty positions and early retirement packages. That leaves 7500 people who are full-time, young civil servants who are about to lose their jobs. Many of these people will be residents of Victoria. Being the capital, it can’t help but suffer most of the cuts. Already, EI claims are up 30% in this province. From Leah’s experiences, there are several times more applicants per job than is usual. At Digitopolis, we are getting more unsolicited applications that at any other time. Gordon Campbell thinks that cutting these 10 000 jobs will help him balance books. According to the NDP,

Last week, the Legislature’s Finance Committee — made up almost entirely of B.C. Liberal MLAs — recommended to the premier that he proceed cautiously and consult with public servants on his plans to slash government workers and programs.

. Why, when unemployment seems to skyrocketing would Campbell simply contribute to it? Already, nearly ever government agency claims to be understaffed. This will simply exacerbate this. Marginally effective agencies will be rendered completely ineffective. If counseling and HR ministries are hit, how will they support their newly unemployed colleagues? Etc.

Now, I do recognise that layoffs are often useful tools for corporations to help balance books. But BC already has a very streamlined civil service. I think it’s the second-smallest per capita. So will this really help that much. I could live with them not renewing contracts, offering early retirement, etc (the first 2500). But I fear, and in some ways hope, that the next 7500 come back and bite Gordon Campbell in the ass.